My friend Claudia ia a keeper, too. Her archivist tendencies are strong. Like me she never throws anything away. And, I am really glad! Grateful!
Yesterday Claudia stopped by. "I found this in a box of papers and I want you to have it." She handed me a folded yellowed paper. " Wait til you read it. You say, "I want to be a storyteller" - and look at you - you did it."
I unfolded the sheet of paper covered with early computer printer typescript. She had printed out and kept an email I wrote to her on January 30, 1996 from Jim's old Compuserve email address.
The important papragraph: " ALSO - I hope I told you how much we enjoyed the Storytellers Theatre event with the woman using her life as the stry. I would never have known about it if you had not sent me the flier. She was terrific.
I want to be a storyteller - it has everything for me, talking, family history, some dramatics, and performing. IN a way, I have actually started in that direction already - with the genealogy entertainment.
"Claudia, it was you - you sent me there. You are the deus ex-machina"
The woman I saw that night was storyteller, Milbre Burch.
When I sat next to her at the storytellers dinner at the Williamsburg Storytelling Festival last September I told her about that evening and how she had inspired me. I think she thought I was a bit dotty - but it meant a lot to me to tell her. Afterall her performance opened my eyes to possibilities and set me on a new path.
But it seems now - that the more important thank you goes to Claudia who gave me the key for the door.
Let's tell this story right.